I am a mama. A constantly awed, unthinkably tired, deeply inspired mama, of two very precious little girls. A mama that greatly admires other mamas that share their stories and make me say, "Oh, you too huh?! Thank goodness."
My bathroom mirror holds quotes and snippets from other blogs that are applicable to the phase of parenting I am in at the time. Words of encouragement that I read over and over. Words that remind me that I AM doing my best for my girls, that I need to do better for my husband, and not to forget myself amid the madness.
Though I constantly question whether I'm doing or saying the right thing as a mother (doesn't every mom wonder if the Match the baby animal to it's parent activity sheets are setting up a stigma that all families look exactly the same?! What am I teaching my child?! No? Just me then. Ok … carry on) -- this wild ride was meant for me-- I was meant for this and it’s what I live for. They are what I live for.
With that said, lately I’ve been hearing a little voice saying "There’s more...YOU are more...do something for YOU!" And that voice that started as a whisper and was drowned under 2am feedings ( and 4am and 6am and and and…), diaper changes, 3 year old tantrums and bed time stories, is getting louder. I'm feeling a longing to do a little something for me, and possibly for other women and mothers.
I often find myself thinking in a narrative voice. I want to write. I've wanted to write since I was a little girl. But all I've really written are love letters to my daughters in journals I've kept for them since finding out I was pregnant, and snippets of poems or children’s book ideas here and there. I want to do more. I want to share. I want my writing to make others say "Oh! You too?! Thank goodness." just as I do when I read something that opens the door and turns on the light of divine revelation.
And quite honestly, divine revelation to me could be as simple as “my child won’t poop in the toilet,” or as heavy as “having young children takes a toll on my marriage.” Anything I read that resonates and sparks the feeling of community and support among other
women, hundreds and thousands of other mothers, or even just. one.
It makes me feel so validated I could cry. The weight that flies off my shoulders as I take a deep breath and feel understood – by complete strangers – is so palpable. It’s a magical thing for me.
I'm what Glennon Melton refers to as “a feeling person,” and I very often burst into tears without a moment’s notice (a commercial set to good music – fuh-get about-it – throw in a baby – game over). My mom jokes that she can't remember one day during my childhood that I didn’t cry. Truth-- it’s probably close to the same now. But I’ve learned to embrace it. I feel things deeply. And those feelings are sparked sometimes by something as simple as a song with musical notes that just seem to hit me – right there. Sometimes it’s just an encouraging message from a friend. Big news stories, those get me too – I don’t watch the news often, I can’t handle it. Most often these days, the tears are child related – a sweet gesture between sisters, a NEVER ENDING rambling story told by a three and a half year old with the most adorable lisp, the hard mom days, the easy mom days…
I mean, really. The tiptoes, the smiling big sister cheeks, the look... I'm crying right now.
And, quite often, it’s because I've read a post or quote that makes me scream "YES! THIS is it! This is motherhood! This is what I want to teach my children!" I carry these words that I read deep within myself and use them to get through this ride that is motherhood, reminding myself daily of these inspiring revelations.
The truth is, the reasons for the “feeling tears” are infinite.
The point is, it means the world to me to read words that make me feel, that may make me cry, but mostly that remind me that I. Am. Not. Alone. I so badly want to be that voice for others, that voice that lights those deep feelings and revelations and helps them to acknowledge the life around them. I want to be that voice for me.
So, here we are. To quote Glennon Melton one more time (who are we kidding, I’ll be quoting her like crazy), “We can do hard things.” This is hard for me, sharing my thoughts, fears, frustrations – sharing myself – in a public venue. But I’ve gotten so much from platforms such as this, and there’s that not-so-whispering voice… and she won’t shut up. I can’t drown her out. And I can’t very well tell my daughters that they can do hard things, things they think they can’t do (*ahem* poop in the toilet *ahem*) if I can’t buck up and show them that I CAN DO HARD THINGS TOO. So, no more excuses. Here I am, doing a hard thing, for me.